February 24, 2017

The Democrat's cost of ignoring the local

Washington Examiner - [Howard] Dean blamed the steep decline Democrats suffered under President Barack Obama on the party focusing more on holding the White House than on down ballot offices in Congress and the states. He also cited the challenge of keeping liberal voters engaged in midterm elections.

"The problem is, when you have an incumbent president, whether it's Jimmy Carter, Bill Clinton or Barack Obama, the Democratic Party becomes the re-elect vehicle for the president and abandons its role as a grassroots organization," Dean told reporters. "That's not a bad thing to say about Barack Obama, it happens every time we have an incumbent president."

Under Obama, the Democrats lost their majorities in the House and Senate, several governorships, and nearly 1,000 seats in state legislatures across the country. Some Democratic insiders have conceded it's a problem of the party's own making.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Dean is absolutely correct is his assessment, and it was heartening to see him advocate the fifty state strategy while he led the DNC. I remember the difficulties in attempting to persuade his staff in the 2004 presidential campaign that a progressive message could be highly resonant in the heartland and that it would be a dire mistake to succumb to the stereotypical condescension Easterners hold for the so-called fly over states. The MoveOn factions that invaded his campaign diluted his populist message and placed entirely too emphasis on email solicitations for cash---turned his into a conventional effort of which the results could be predicted. Had Iowans the opportunity to have heard the Howard Dean of the early months of May/June 2003 the outcome would have been quite different for the governor. The Democratic establishment set out to crucify him and in particular his message, which was not so very much different than that Sanders would present 12 years on.